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Examples of Symbols

10 Examples of Symbols

It is a sensitive and non-verbal representation of an idea that results from a process of assimilation and synthesis of said idea in a culture . This representation can be a graphic, visual, auditory or figurative element . This means that a symbol arises from the way of expressing it different from verbal language and from the process of convincing about a particular concept.

This shows us that around a symbol there must be a social convention that allows all members to give the same meaning to it.

It is said that when a person has managed to influence the social environment, at a certain point he becomes a symbol. For example: “The singer Madonna is a symbol of modern femininity.”

Symbols function

Symbols have the function of transmitting abstract or complex meanings. Whose content in some cases is difficult to summarize in common language. For example, numerical values, cultures, nationalities, ideologies, feelings, religion , social, danger and anti-values, among many others.

Like language, they explain concepts to us, operating at the unconscious and subconscious level, allowing those concepts to be communicable and understandable. This indicates that symbols allow us to connect between the invisible and the visible. The abstract and the concrete, unifying in a single element different levels of meaning.

Due to their functionality facilitating the processes of understanding reality, symbols are important for the educational and even therapeutic area. Understanding the symbol allows an individual to recognize himself within a sociocultural group to which he belongs.

Examples of Symbols

bird of peace

This symbol has been used to represent peace after the war of the 20th century. Its origin is biblical and is represented by a white dove with an olive branch in its beak. Its first appearance dates back to Noah’s ark.


Its symbol dates back at least 5000 years and represents good fortune , svastika comes from the Sanskrit “good fortune” or “well-being”. The swastika is used in both the holy book of Hinduism and Buddhism.

At the beginning of the 20th century, the swastika was used a lot in Europe, having as its most common meaning was good luck. However, the symbolism changed to have a representation as an identity of the Aryan race.


This symbol of the heart dates back to the Middle Ages , when the heart associated with love began to be used . It became popular when it began to be used in the exchange of Valentine’s cards in the 17th century.

Radiation symbol

The symbol represents the 3 types of radiation Alpha, Beta and Gamma coming out of the interior of an atom . Known as radioactive clover, this symbol was designed in August 1946 by Cyrill Orly, a mechanical engineer working for the radiation department at the University of Berkeley in California.

Originally it was purple in color and the background was sky blue due to the combination, since the blue contrasted with the violet. The yellow was soon changed to black since the blue did not indicate real danger.

Male or female symbol

The male symbol represents a version of the god Mars where a shield and a spear are displayed, since it is said that the man went hunting to bring food to his family, therefore it also symbolizes an arrow. On the other hand, the female symbol is represented as a circle combined with a cross. This represents the goddess Venus with a hand mirror, it also represents the key to life or fertility.


It emerged as the brainchild of Harvey Ball , when State Mutual Life Insurances merged with Guarantee Mutual Company. The new management launched a campaign to raise the spirits of the staff, promoting smiling during working hours to give a positive image of the company.

The Smiley has served as the basis for the emojis that we get today in internet conversations and strangely Harvey Ball did not patent the Smiley. So, even if the emoji is used on many occasions, he does not receive a penny.

Illuminati symbol

It is a symbol that has undergone significant changes throughout its history. It is related to sight, light, wisdom and spirit, which generates a relationship with many religions and ancient mythology.

The eye that sees everything is related to many religions among them the Christian and the Buddhist; in mythology it is frequently found in Egyptian symbology.

It has been steeped in popular culture for years as a symbol of the Illuminati. A sect described as controlling human life through its political, economic and cultural dominance and connections.

Middle finger symbol

Its origin dates back to the battle of Agincourt in 1415 , where the French proposed to cut off the middle finger of each one of the prisoners of war since. Without that finger, they would make it impossible to shoot the famous British bows. And completely suspend the use of a very important weapon. in future battles.

Unfortunately, the French and their enemies, the English, showed that they knew his secret plans and began to show him the middle finger. Starting this gesture that later spread throughout the world as a gesture of mockery, sarcasm and defiance.

Ying Yang

With an antiquity of more or less 5000 years; It was enunciated by philosophers in China as one of the bases of Taoism. Its origin and meaning goes back to the fact that Ying was the cold side of the mountain facing north. And on the contrary yang the warm side of the mountain facing south.

Represents the existence of an object and the existence of its complement, everything is in a state of transformation . Generating principle of all things, it is the next phase of the tao.

Anarchist symbol

It is the symbol that represents the anarchist movement internationally. Showing a circle that signifies unity and natural balance, the A is the initial of anarchy or acracia.

Its origin dates back to before the Spanish war and was adapted by the anarchist alliance in the 1950s from the revolts during May 68, from there it became one of the most representative symbols.